Summer has always been a time to switch up your eating habits in time for that sun drenched holiday. With the new season upon us, there are tons of delicious and healthy foods we can add to our diets which offer benefits for our overall health and wellbeing. Top Naturopathic Nutritionist, Amy Morris shares her top seven, seasonal favourites to help boost your health and wellbeing this summer:
Bok Choy is a nutrient-dense vegetable widely used in Chinese cooking. One cup of chopped bok choy has just 20 calories and 3 grams of carbohydrates. This is so low it is considered in the negative calorie category of foods, whereby your body actually uses up more calories digesting it than are in the food itself. They’re packed with vitamins and minerals like beta-carotene, which can be converted into vitamin A if needed, and also full of vitamin C to really give your health a boost.
Acai berries have long been recognised as a superfood thanks to their antioxidant properties. Foods high in antioxidants can help to slow down the signs of ageing and protect the body from a range of health issues, and can help to prevent cognitive decline. Some studies show that acai berries are richer in antioxidant properties than blueberries, strawberries, cranberries, raspberries and blackberries, so they’re well worth adding to your diet.
Ashwagandha is a nutrient packed herb which has tonnes of health boosting properties, helping to effectively alleviate aches and pains, thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties. Ashwagandha can also help to increase muscular endurance and stamina, improve concentration, decrease fatigue, and also boost the immune system. One of the easiest ways to add ashwagandha into your diet is via ReJuvenate (£25.25, available from www.water-for-health.co.uk), a new, nutritious, minty tasting greens formula which contains a good dose of ashwagandha, as well as other of nutrient-rich vegetables, cereal grasses, herbs and fruits.
Dandelions are tiny nutritional powerhouses. They’re loaded with vitamins A, B, C, and D; minerals including potassium, iron, and zinc; and phytonutrients like beta-carotene. What’s more, you can eat every single part of the dandelion—roots and all. The petals themselves boast an impressive assortment of antioxidants helpful in preventing diseases, while the minerals in the leaves and roots help the body flush out toxins and impurities.
Grapefruit seed extract, or Citricidal as it is more commonly known is a derived from the seeds, pulp and white membranes of grapefruit. These powerful seeds possess antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal properties and are frequently recommended to treat candidiasis, earaches, and throat infections.
Kefir is a unique cultured dairy product, and one of the most probiotic rich foods on the planet, with incredible health boosting properties. Kefir is made using starter “grains,” which are a combination of bacteria and yeasts that interact with the milk to make the lightly fermented drink that even lactose intolerant people can drink. A regular dose of kefir can help to boost immunity, support digestion and help ease skin conditions including eczema, acne, and psoriasis.
Arame is a species of kelp grown mostly in the Pacific Ocean. It’s loaded with vitamins and minerals, and high in iodine, iron, vitamin A, magnesium, calcium as well as phytonutrients and antioxidants. Arame has natural detoxing properties, helping the body to naturally flush out toxins and can help regulate hormones to fight off symptoms of PMS.